Fatty acid worry for oilseed farms

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Although the market price for oilseed rape is at an all-time high, there is a major cloud hanging over the Scottish crop with many of this year’s crop samples having well above acceptable levels of free fatty acids (FFA).

In a normal year, maximum levels of FFA are 2 per cent and there are few problems but for some reason this season, many samples have much higher levels.

Speaking at the NFU Scotland council meeting this week, Andrew Moir, chairman of the union’s combinable crops committee, admitted: “We as growers, have a real fight on our hands to find out what is causing this.”

He said the union had been working with the trade and with the Home Grown Cereals Authority trying to get to the root of the problem.